By JOHN WAWROW
The Associated Press
Thursday, March 24, 2011; 11:54 AM
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Former Buffalo Sabres star forward Rick Martin was remembered for his goal-scoring intensity and his playful personality during an hourlong memorial service honoring the French Connection line member's life.
Gilbert Perreault, Martin's center, remembered Martin as being a "great entertainer," noting the player's "flamboyant" hockey style and endless supply of jokes. Right winger Rene Robert celebrated Martin by pulling out a can of beer and a cigar, saying "this one's for you my friend."
Thousands of fans - many wearing Martin's No. 7 jerseys - packed six sections of HSBC Arena on Thursday. The service was held 11 days after the 59-year-old Martin died of complications due to heart disease while driving his car in suburban Buffalo.